9780805059816

Childhood

Alexis, Andre

ISBN 10: 0805059814 / 0-8050-5981-4
ISBN 13: 9780805059816
Publisher: Henry Holt & Company
Publication Date: 1998
Binding: Hardcover
Editorial Reviews for this title:
Synopsis:
A stirring meditation on the elusiveness of the past and humanity's yearning for emotional closure.

Childhood is Andre Alexis's picaresque and stunning debut novel. It features Thomas Macmillan, a Canadian with ties to Trinidad, who pieces together--from memory and from related stories--the early years of his life.

Raised in Petrolia, a small town in southern Ontario near the U.S. border, Thomas is abandoned by his mother to the care of an eccentric grandmother. When he reaches the age of nine, his mother Katarina and a Mr. Mataf take him on a pilgrimage to Ottawa, where they live in the Victorian home of Mr. Henry Wing, a magus-like figure, whose love of science and the imagination becomes an important legacy for Thomas. Set in the 1950s and early 1960s, Childhood is daring, intelligent, profoundly moving, laced with humor, and tinged with longing. It signals the emergence of a supremely talented writer and storyteller, whose gifts for drawing memorable characters and for infusing place with a sense of wonder and immediacy are equal to the bold ambition of his novel's title.


Review:
Thomas MacMillan is 40, an orphan, an heir, a laboratory technician, an autodidact of esoteric intellectual appetites, as he writes this interrogation of the past disguised as a letter to his absent lover. Like Andre Alexis, both Thomas's restlessly sexual mother, Katarina, and his courtly mentor, Henry Wing, were born in Trinidad and resettled in Canada. Their unconventional lifelong relationship is both the deepest mystery and the central fact of Thomas's life, the creature in the center of his heart and the heart of this fictional memoir, the beast he walks around and around, prods with questions and tries to fix with lists of explanations and attributes. From his quasi-scientific attempts to understand the past, the nature of love in general and theirs in particular, Alexis derives some entertaining narrative quirks, including Thomas's notes, graphs, and footnotes in the text, letting paragraphs elide into nothingness as questions of motivation remain unresolved. After Thomas's grandmother dies, an event it takes him the better part of a day to discern, his footloose mother appears to claim her son, accompanied by a lover who abandons both on the road to Montreal. Mother and son seek refuge in the Ottawa home of the deliciously eccentric Henry Wing, a stock trader with a home laboratory and a gigantic library, who may or may not be Thomas's biological father. By the end of this gently funny and genuinely original little novel, we come to understand that what first seems linear and picaresque is actually a perfect circle, as Katarina goes home to die in her mother's bed and Thomas comes to inhabit Henry's wayward style of scholarship and his patient, distant style of loving. A debut this sly and satisfying promises fine things to come. --Joyce Thompson

Review

Review:
Uniquely imagined and vividly evoked, André Alexis?s prize-winning novel chronicles the childhood ? or perhaps the loss of childhood ? of Thomas MacMillan, who sets out to piece together the early years of his life. Raised in a Southern Ontario town in the ?50s and ?60s, Thomas is abandoned to the care of his eccentric Trinidadian grandmother. Then, at ten, his mother, Katarina, reclaims him, taking him to Ottawa and to the once-splendid Victorian home of Henry Wing, a gentle conjurer whose love of science and the imagination becomes an important legacy. But is he Thomas?s father? Moving and wryly humorous, Childhood tells the story of a man?s quest for what is lost, bringing him closer to the truth about himself.

From the Inside Flap

Editorial reviews may belong to another edition of this title.
 

Childhood: Search Results

1.
Childhood (ISBN: 0805059814 / 0-8050-5981-4)
Alexis, Andre
ISBN 10: 0805059814
ISBN 13: 9780805059816
Bookseller: Brats Bargain Books (Waresboro, GA, U.S.A.)
Bookseller Rating: 5-star rating
Quantity Available: 1

Book Description: Henry Holt & Company. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 0805059814 Never Read-may have some minor shelf/handling or age wear to edges or dust jacket if applicable?price inside cover-publishers mark-Good Copy- I ship FAST!. Bookseller Inventory # SKU000016953

Bookseller & Payment Information | More Books from this Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Add Book to Shopping Basket
Price: US$ 3.97
Convert Currency
Shipping: US$ 4.59
Within U.S.A.
2.
Childhood (ISBN: 0805059814 / 0-8050-5981-4)
Alexis, Andre
ISBN 10: 0805059814
ISBN 13: 9780805059816
Bookseller: ExtremelyReliable (Richmond, TX, U.S.A.)
Bookseller Rating: 5-star rating
Quantity Available: 1

Book Description: Henry Holt & Company. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Buy with confidence. Excellent Customer Service & Return policy. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0805059814

Bookseller & Payment Information | More Books from this Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Add Book to Shopping Basket
Price: US$ 9.05
Convert Currency
Shipping: US$ 3.99
Within U.S.A.
3.
Childhood (ISBN: 0805059814 / 0-8050-5981-4)
Alexis, Andre
ISBN 10: 0805059814
ISBN 13: 9780805059816
Bookseller: Clover Books (Toms River, NJ, U.S.A.)
Bookseller Rating: 5-star rating
Quantity Available: 1

Book Description: Henry Holt and Company, NY, 1998. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. 1st Edition. "Uniquely imagined, vividly evoked, Childhood is at once lyrical and profound, moving and wryly humorous. It is an intricately textured chronical of a life in which a man's quest for what is lost discloses the ambiguous nature of the past and leads him closer to the truth about himself." Hard cover in brand new condition. Text block clean and tight. Stated First Edition. Book has a small remainder mark at top. It has orange and tan boards with red lettering along spine. Dust jacket in brand new condition. Bookseller Inventory # 001717

Bookseller & Payment Information | More Books from this Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Add Book to Shopping Basket
Price: US$ 10.00
Convert Currency
Shipping: US$ 3.50
Within U.S.A.
4.
Childhood (ISBN: 9780805059816)
Alexis, Andre
ISBN 10: 0805059814
ISBN 13: 9780805059816
Bookseller: Castle Rock (Amherst, NS, Canada)
Bookseller Rating: 5-star rating
Quantity Available: 1

Book Description: Book Condition: Brand New. Book Condition: Brand New * All orders are processed and shipped from Las Vegas, NV USA *. Bookseller Inventory # 97808050598161.0

Bookseller & Payment Information | More Books from this Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Add Book to Shopping Basket
Price: US$ 10.89
Convert Currency
Shipping: US$ 3.99
From Canada to U.S.A.
5.
Childhood (ISBN: 0805059814 / 0-8050-5981-4)
Alexis, Andre
ISBN 10: 0805059814
ISBN 13: 9780805059816
Bookseller: Summit Read (Summit, NJ, U.S.A.)
Bookseller Rating: 5-star rating
Quantity Available: 1

Book Description: Book Condition: New. New item. Bookseller Inventory # QX-212-41-4566804

Bookseller & Payment Information | More Books from this Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Add Book to Shopping Basket
Price: US$ 30.74
Convert Currency
Shipping: US$ 3.99
Within U.S.A.
View All Listings for this Book